Is it better to be a consultant or an employee?

I ran into a former supervisor from many years ago at the local Home Depot this evening. We had a pleasant discussion. It reminded me of a question I asked, right around the time he and I last talked. I asked whether it’s better to be a consultant or an employee.

Here’s what I would say to my 2005 self if I could, somehow. I present it here since I know someone else must have the same question.

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Albert Pujols, mercenary

I’m a Royals fan living in St. Louis, so my perspective on Albert Pujols has always been that he’s the one who got away. He went to high school and college in Kansas City, but somehow Royals scouts overlooked him. The Cardinals signed him, and he became a once-in-a-generation player. Even if he never plays another game in the majors, he’s a lock for the Hall of Fame.

Fans loved him, because, well, who doesn’t like a guy who hits .299 with 37 home runs and 99 RBIs in the worst year of his career? He’s always been detached and distant, but St. Louisans will forgive that for wins and numbers. He talked about being a Cardinal for life, but then St. Louis woke up on Thursday morning, drove to work, and found out on the rush-hour radio that he was gone, signed to the Los Angeles California Angels of Anaheim, the Tikki Tikki Tembo Nosa Rembo Chari Bari Ruchi Pip Pen Pembo of baseball.

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How to get my job (2006 edition)

It seems like every year or two, somebody asks me how to get my job. Given the way the last year or so has gone, I can’t believe anyone’s asking me that question, but it’s been coming back up again. I’ve made some mistakes in my career–obviously–but since I’m still in the field, I must have done a few things right too.

I guess it makes sense to trace my career and see what I would do differently.

Computer stuff will be back soon…

I did very little this weekend, since I actually had a weekend this time around. Saturday I read a lot and slept and played Baseball Mogul, Sunday I got up early and did some laundry, went to church, read a lot, caught up with a couple of old friends I hadn’t talked to in a little while, and I ran Disk Administrator on my Duron-750, the system bluescreened, and now nothing can read the drive and I’m hacked off that I’m going to miss a chance to watch Greg Maddux make a run at 300 wins, Pedro Martinez make a run at Walter Johnson’s old strikeout record (Nolan Ryan was still a long way away), and Mark McGwire make a run at Hank Aaron’s 755 career home runs.